“‘Only today,’ he said, ‘today, in October sun, it’s all gold—sky and tree and water. Everything just before it changes looks to be made of gold.’”
– Eudora Welty
When the frosts come, we know nothing gold can stay. So get out, rod in hand, and enjoy the October sun.
If you head to the Creek, expect to find the usual mix of fall bugs. In the late morning you will see the last of the Tricos mixed with Baetis. Afternoons can have a strong Callibaetis hatch along with the occasional Mahogany Dun or October Caddis. On blustery days, Baetis can be strong. Terrestrials are always a good bet when the wind blows, but the fish are getting weary of hoppers. Ants and beetles have been more consistent. Small Baetis nymphs and midge are producing fish when all else fails. Also, remember that flows tend to go up in the fall, and the Creek is full of water. If you go tubing, take your fins.
Fall fishing is in full swing on the Wood. Hecuba, the last big bug of the season, have been seen up and down the river and the fish are keying on them. Baetis are also strong and should keep the fish feeding during the afternoon. To imitate this fly you can use any size 18 or 20 parachute or hackled pattern. There will still be a few caddis around as well. Along with hoppers, flying ants have been abundant. As always, the nymphing has been outstanding.
Warm Springs and Trail Creek
Water is low and clear on both these tributaries. There are still a few stocked rainbows left around the bridges and plenty of small wild trout to fool for those willing to walk a bit. Look for the same bugs here as you find on the Wood.
South Fork of the Boise
The flows have finally dropped to around 300 CFS, perfect for wade fishing. As always, look for Pinks and Flavs along with fall Baetis during the comfortable times. Caddis can be strong on pleasant days. If you find no bugs fluttering, you might try a terrestrial. Nymphing is also going to be productive.
The Upper Lost
The water in this part of the Lost is getting low, so focus your attention on the Main Stem from the North Fork confluence and down. Since the river is low, the fish are concentrated in the buckets and you can expect there to be a few good fish per run. With the cooler weather, the fishing is best from the middle of the day into the late afternoon.
Big Lost Below Mackay
The flows below the dam have come down under 300 CFS but water is off color. Now that the reservoir level has dropped, work on the dam has begun. More than likely the water will remain turbid during this process.
It is very chilly in Stanley in the mornings, but the afternoon fishing has been good with Red Quills and terrestrials. Standard beadhead nymphs tied off the back of big bugs will also be good producers.There are plenty of easy access points along the river from above the town of Stanley on down to Challis.
Penny Lake, Heagle Park Pond, Lake Creek, and Gaver’s Lagoon still have stocked fish. If you are looking for a fun spot to have a family picnic and catch a few fish, give these a go.
Silver Creek: Callibeatis | Tricos | Beatis | Mahogany Duns | October Caddis | Hoppers | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive | Small Pheasant Tails
Big Wood and Warm Springs: Red Quills | Caddis | Crane Flies | Hoppers | Perdigons | Bishop’s Dynamite | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive | Chubby Chernobyl
Salmon: Flying Ants| Hoppers | Pat’s Rubber Legs | Bishop’s Dynamite | Prince Nymph
South Fork of the Boise: Pink Alberts | Caddis | Crane Fly | Hoppers | Duracell | Bullet French Nymph | Perdigons | San Juan Worm | Pat’s Rubber Leg Stone
|Silver Creek||144 cfs|
|Big Wood||270 cfs|
|The Lost Below Mackay||279 cfs|
|South Fork of the Boise||308 cfs|